The information provided on this resource page is for informational purposes only and not intended to be legal advice. It is designed to assist our members and other housing providers in understanding COVID-19 and the issues it raises, but it is not intended to address specific circumstances or business situations. For specific legal questions, please consult your legal counsel.

 

$100 Million Housing Assistance and a “Tweak” of the Eviction Moratorium Dial

Author: MHA/Wednesday, July 15, 2020/Categories: COVID-19

Governor Walz announced yesterday the creation of a $100 million housing assistance program. The program will be funded with federal dollars through the Coronavirus Relief Fund, which was authorized by the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Funds will likely be ready to be disbursed by mid- to late-August.

In addition, Governor Walz “tweaked” the Eviction and Lease Termination Moratorium yesterday by issuing Executive Order 20-79 which replaces the previous Executive Orders. The Order goes into effect on August 4th and requires a 7-day notice prior to filing an action permitted under the Executive Order.

Executive Order 20-79 exempts the following additional circumstances from the Moratorium permitting lease terminations and evictions:

  1. When the tenant materially violates the lease by significantly damaging property on the premises.
  2. When the tenant remains in the property past the vacate date after receiving a notice to vacate or nonrenew due to the need of the owner or the owner’s relative to move into the property within 7 days.

In addition, prior Writs of Recovery issued as a result of an Eviction Action judgment entered prior to the original Executive Order 20-14, previously suspended on March 24, 2020 at 5:00 p.m., may now be executed.

Minnesota Housing Finance Agency has created an FAQ sheet that discusses Executive Order 20-79. MHA will continue to press for a further turn of the dial. Squatters, bullies, smokers, and partiers who are violating their leases are not addressed in this “tweak” of the dial even though Governor Walz’s Administration was asked specifically to address these circumstances last week. MHA has suggested a timeline and process to Governor Walz that would further amend the Executive Order to provide an orderly off-ramp from the Eviction and Lease Termination Moratorium.

MEDIA COVERAGE


Eviction Moratorium Media Coverage

Walz Signs Executive Order on Evictions

An eviction moratorium continues, but housing providers can evict a tenant if the tenant violates a lease by endangering others' safety, engaging in certain illegal activities or damaging property. Evictions can also proceed if the homeowner or a family member must move into the premises or if a writ of recovery was issued prior to 5 p.m. on March 24.

Housing Assistance Press Conference Video

Note the first question asked by Tom Hauser (KSTP) at 20:00 concerning the Eviction Moratorium.

 

Housing Assistance Media Coverage

$100 Million Available to Minnesotans Struggling With Housing Costs

People will be able to qualify for the new housing money if they have been affected by COVID-19 and make less than 300% of the federal poverty level, or $78,600 for a family of four, according to Minnesota Housing Commissioner Jennifer Ho.

Gov. Walz Announces $100M in Housing Assistance Before Sept. 1 Rent is Due

The Governor said that the funding is designed to kick in and help people pay their Sept. 1 rent. That's the first rent check that will be due after the loss of the $600 per week in federal funding that's been added onto Minnesotans' unemployment benefits.

Walz Announces $100 Million in COVID-19 Housing Aid

Minnesota Housing Commissioner Jennifer Ho said the goal is to move quickly to disperse the funds. She said Minnesotans should be able to begin applying for the assistance by mid-August. More information is available on Minnesota Housing’s website.

Gov. Walz, Lt. Gov. Flanagan Announce Housing Relief Plan Amid COVID-19

Local grant administrators will be selected in the coming weeks, according to the Governor's Office. Minnesota Housing anticipates Minnesotans can begin applying for assistance with local grant administrators in the first part of August.

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